I’m curious . . . .
- Are there times when you don’t have a clue what time it is?
- Or how you spent the last two hours?
- And then there’s the “what day is it?” feeling.
The Greeks had two ways of defining time: Chronos and Kairos.
Personally, I feel like I’m currently living on Kairos time, not Chronos time and I’m a bit discomforted by it.
What’s the difference?
Chronos: Quantitative (minutes, hours, days, etc.)
This one is pretty clear to me. It’s Tuesday at 1:00 PM. Time for lunch and a power nap.
Kairos: Qualitative (in the moment)
Aaron Hess’s “updated definition of kairos concludes that along with taking advantage of the timeliness and appropriateness of a situation, the term also implies being knowledgeable of and involved in the environment where the situation is taking place to benefit fully from seizing the opportune moment.”
With these new times we are living in, our schedules are much more flexible than they used to be.
- Up at 6:00. Breakfast at 7:00. Catch the bus at 7:30. This routine has been replaced with “I should probably change out of my PJs before noon.”
- Friday dinner at 6:00 PM with friends doesn’t happen anymore. Now, it’s “Hey, any time for a virtual cocktail hour this week?”
- The “Stay Home, Stay Safe” order will be lifted on May 4th . . . or not.
I don’t know about you, but I’m much more comfortable working in Chronos time. But, for many reasons, the world is working a bit more on Kairos time.
If you want some guidance on how to embrace the Kairos time we are currently living in, look to the children around you. Children live more in the moment and with intention, not hindered by an attachment to time and schedule.
How can you do that?
- Instead of scheduling a walk at 8:00 AM, check the weather and go during the most beautiful part of the day.
- Breakfast doesn’t have to be oatmeal at 7:30. How about breakfast food for dinner and dinner food for breakfast?
- Take advantage of what your body is telling you, not what standard norms may have dictated. If you do deep thinking better at 2:00 PM than 8:00 AM, so be it. If you think better on the couch than in your office, think on the couch. Give yourself some grace. These are different times, it’s okay to act differently.
Knowing our days may be a bit more Kairos-defined than Chronos-defined, how can you make the most of every day?
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